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Is Your Kid Ready for Sleepaway Camp?

Thinking about sending the kids to sleepaway camp? We asked moms about their children’s experiences. Here’s what a sleepaway stint can teach your camper (and you).


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"My daughter and I are very close. Being a single mom, we go everywhere together, so it was very hard for me to adjust to that week without her. I missed her terribly, but I knew it [would be] a wonderful experience for her to gain more self-confidence and make new friends. I wanted this experience to help her become more independent and get her out of her comfort zone, and it definitely did."

—Jenny Velarde, Rutherford
Summer Leadership Conference at Camp Mason, Hardwick

“When they come home, you’re always surprised by how mature they seem compared to when they left. I think it’s good to have the time away; you get to regroup a little bit, and so do they. It’s good for everybody.”

—Erica Herzbach, South Orange
Frost Valley YMCA, Claryville, NY

“The first two weeks are the hardest, really the end of the second week. Homesickness arises, but then it passes. My son was so homesick we had to go pick him up. The next day, he wanted to go back. He missed his friends and all the fun.”

—Cindy Cardinal, Sparta
Summit Camp and Travel, Summit

“It helped when my boys talked to me about camp and I’d talk about things I remember...It made them realize that I did have a life before I was a mom. It’s not a big thing, but it gave them another view of me.”

—Lauren Zichelli, Montclair
Campus Kids, Blairstown

“We learned she doesn’t need us 24/7. She doesn’t need constant parental input, and is a very capable youngster…She learned about making her own choices. Every afternoon the campers got to choose electives. She learned to prioritize what she wanted to do, try new things and sign up for activities…even if she didn’t know any of the other girls [who] signed up. She also learned all about girl power!”

—Jenn Burke, Trumbull, CT
Camp Chinqueka, Bantam, CT

 

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